Hipmunk

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Hipmunk
Type Private
Industry Software, Travel, Internet
Founded 2010
Headquarters San Francisco, USA
Key people Adam Goldstein, CEO
Steve Huffman, Co-founder
Products Software
Employees 35+
Website hipmunk.com

Hipmunk is a consumer-oriented online travel company headquartered in San Francisco, California. It was co-founded by Adam Goldstein and Reddit co-founder Steve Huffman in 2010.[1] The company focuses on the visual organization of flight search results.[2] It received increased media attention when Google announced its flight search service in September 2011.[3][4]

In June 2012, Hipmunk raised $15M in Series B funding led by Institutional Venture Partners, bringing their total funding to $20M.[5] In May 2014, the company announced that it raised a $20 million Series C funding round. The round was led by Oak Investment Partners, which has had a great deal of experience in consumer travel. Existing partners Institutional Venture Partners and Ignition Partners also played a role in the new funding, alongside Hipmunk's angel investors.[6]

Functions[edit]

Hipmunk presents search results chronologically by time of day on a single page. Flights are ranked by price, schedule, and "agony", a score based on factors such as duration of the flight and number of stops. The search engine also ranks hotels, filtered by price, reviews, and an "ecstasy" rating. Aside from flights and hotels, the service looks up airbnb results[7] and sorts relevant train routes provided by Amtrak.[8]

The company makes money by collecting commissions for directing flight and hotel purchase traffic to airlines, hotels, and other travel-search sites. For example Orbitz pays Hipmunk its standard rate of $3 per flight sold.[9]

Hipmunk is programmed using Python and Tornado and rents infrastructure from Amazon EC2.[10]

History[edit]

Hipmunk was launched in August 2010 after Steve Huffman and Adam Goldstein worked together for nearly three months during Y Combinator's Summer 2010 class. Alexis Ohanian joined the team days before the launch.[11] Hipmunk relied on Orbitz to get its flight data at first, but in November 2010 the company signed a deal to use ITA Software's QPX Solution. As of 2011 all major US travel search engines, such as Kayak, FareCompare, Bing, and TripAdvisor, are powered by ITA.[12]

In February 2011, Hipmunk introduced an iPhone app, followed by an iPad-dedicated app four months later.[13][14]

In August 2011, Hipmunk passed one million search queries per month.[15]

Time magazine included Hipmunk in its list of "The 50 Best Websites of 2011".[16]

Demographics[edit]

Hipmunk has a worldwide audience of 130,000 visitors per month according to DoubleClick Ad Planner. Those visitors generate about 900,000 page views.[17] The median Hipmunk user is a male, 35–44 years of age, has a Bachelor's degree, and is making a middle-range income of $75,000-$99,000. According to the report, top audience interests are venture capital, development tools, and travel agencies and services, suggesting a computer-savvy demographic and culture.

Hipmunk Me[edit]

In his role as marketing director, Alexis Ohanian directed the Hipmunk Me project, which allowed Facebook fans to request hand-rendered "Hipmunkifications" of their profile photo. During this campaign, the company’s Facebook fan base grew by more than 500 percent.[18]

References[edit]

External links[edit]